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You Look Moist: An Instagram-Famous Makeup Artist on How She Cares for Her Skin

You Look Moist: An Instagram-Famous Makeup Artist

Welcome to You Look Moist, a column in which Man Repeller asks cool people with glowing visages how they achieved their supreme hydration (amongst other things). Today’s installment features Ali a.k.a. Sweet Mutuals, a makeup artist known for creating conceptual looks using her own face as a canvas.


How would you describe your skin?

I typically have oily skin, but the amount of makeup I wear for my job can sometimes dry it out, so the biggest challenge is trying to keep it balanced. Other than that, my skin isn’t too complicated.

How would you describe your skincare approach in general?

I would say it’s “medium-maintenance.” I only use a small rotation of products. Drinking water is the most intensive part of my routine. I try to drink a gallon a day.

Which skincare products are integral to your routine for achieving your ideal, glowing, well-moisturized complexion, and how/when do you use each of them?

In order to keep my skin healthy and hydrated, I use Drunk Elephant’s B-Hydra Intensive Hydration Serum, Mad Hippie’s Vitamin C Serum, and Revolution’s Green Tea and Collagen Hydrating & Plumping Serum day and night, followed by Drunk Elephant’s Virgin Marula Luxury Facial Oil. I also do a face mask 2-3 times a week. My favorites are The Ordinary AHA 30% BHA 2% Peeling Solution, which makes my face feel smooth and clean and Apieu Banana Sheet Mask, which gives me so much moisture and a lovely glow.

What about makeup products?

Even though I’m a makeup artist, I don’t really wear makeup unless I’m photographing myself, or doing a promotional shoot or interview. I started experimenting with makeup almost two years ago, using my mother’s makeup products that are God-knows-how-old, simply because I didn’t see anyone else doing the kinds of looks I was interested in, and because it’s fun! Putting on makeup just for the sake of it is challenging and daring, and I love that feeling. Some of my go-to products are Fenty Beauty Gloss Bomb Universal Lip Luminizer, Huda Beauty Life Liner Double Ended Eyeliner Liquid & Pencil, and Claropsyche’s Real Fantasy palette for eyeshadow.

What’s the cheapest product you use regularly and love?

I am in love with Covergirl’s Outlast All Day Lipcolor Transparent Clear Top Coat. It gives you shine like lipgloss does, and hydration the same way chapstick does. It’s the best of both worlds.

Is there anything you try to avoid, skincare- or makeup-wise?

I try to avoid any cleansers that have alcohol in them–my favorite cleanser is Cosrx Low PH Good Morning Cleanser Gel. Matte foundation is also something I try to steer clear of as well. Instead, I really like Fenty Beauty Pro Filt’r in the shade 460.

Any next-level tips, tricks, or services that you swear by to help you look “lit from within”?

Drinking water. If it wasn’t for my father emphasizing how important this is, I have no idea what my skin would look like. Water is nature’s cure for almost anything, and it is integral in making my skin look its best. Apart from that, I would say that meditation has helped my skin as well. Clearing the mind seems to clear the small bumps on my forehead. A clear mind equals a clear face.

What’s your go-to product or trick for fixing a skin disaster?

My mom told me to put Vicks Vapor Rub on my small acne bumps at night before I go to sleep. Turns out, it works!

Do you do anything differently skincare-wise when you travel?

I actually don’t have a traveling skincare routine!

What’s something you wish your teenage self knew about taking care of your skin?

Just because you have oily skin doesn’t mean you should try to dry your skin out. Also, don’t buy products that aren’t meant for your skin just because the packaging is cute. And please drink more water!

Sweet Mutuals

Ali Sweetmutuals

Ali is a self-taught editorial makeup artist and model. She strives to showcase to her audience that Black people are revolutionary.

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